New law pioneer Atrium lays off lawyers in restructuring

In-house legal team at high-profile start-up to be cut with most legal advice now provided by independent advisers

Justin Kan Atrium

High-profile new law start-up Atrium is laying off most of its attorneys and paralegals as part of a major review of its business model.

The US company, which launched in 2017 amid a blaze of publicity, will now focus primarily on tech tools it has developed for its start-up clients as well as expanding the advice offered by its existing network of independent advisers.

In a statement, Atrium co-founder and chief executive Justin Kan said in-house legal advisers would have the option to join the professional services network as preferred advisers although a "small group" would remain in house to offer "strategic" services such as M&A and financing as well as co-ordinating outside legal advice.

Atrium currently lists 19 lawyers on its website and Kan told Techcrunch more than 10 lawyers would be affected by the shake up.

Atrium, which says it has more than 450 start-ups on its books, tags itself as 'a corporate law firm and technology company' and offers subscription-based pricing.

Membership options start at $500 per month - a package that includes unlimited initial legal consultations on new matters and a software platform that automates simple legal tasks - with a deluxe upgrade priced at $1500 a month.

The company was co-founded in 2017 by Kan, who made his reputation in Silicon Valley as co-founder of Twitch, a service for users to watch each other play video games online. The company raised $75m from investors including Andreessen Horowitz, Y Combinator, and General Catalyst.

Former Atrium general counsel Tony Wang, who left the company last month to form another legal services business, wrote on LinkedIn that he received word over the weekend that “Atrium is undergoing an internal restructuring and that a large part of the legal workforce is being let go".

“Many of my colleagues at Atrium were among the hardest-working, team-oriented, and forward-thinking individuals I’ve had the pleasure of working with," he said.

Email your news and story ideas to: